Deck Maintenance And Your Home
Many people enjoy the convenience of having a backyard deck. A deck is great for parties or simply a beautiful place to unwind at the end of the day. Because of this, a deck can bring a lot of pleasure to a household. Taking proper care of a deck can prolong the life of the structure, making it possible to enjoy it for many years.
Deck Maintenance And Cleaning
Basic cleaning is essential to good deck maintenance. Even when the wood is treated and sealed, there is still the chance for dirt, grime, and another residue to slowly damage the sealant and cause the wood to deteriorate. For this reason, it is a good idea to sweep any debris off the surface of the deck at least once a week. During times of the year when pollen is high or, leaves are falling, make it a point to sweep the deck more often.
Along with sweeping your deck regularly, you also want to engage in a little deep cleaning from time to time. To achieve the best results, make sure to choose a cleaning agent that is safe for sealed wood surfaces. As an added precaution, make it a point to wet the deck floor with water before you apply the cleanser. This prevents the cleaner from seeping into any deep scratches and possibly weakening one section of the flooring.
When cleaning the deck, make sure to use a firm scrub brush. There are several on the market that are specially formulated for use in cleaning decks. Some models are constructed to allow the brush to detach from the handle, quickly converting the brush into a small tool that can be used to get into the corners and other areas of the deck. Make sure you use smooth strokes to dislodge any residue that did not come up with the sweeping.
In general, it is a good idea to wash the deck at least once a month. While some people prefer to use a power washer, a wood deck can easily be cleaned using a simple nozzle attachment on a standard garden hose. Depending on the local weather conditions, a more frequent cleaning may be necessary.
Routine Deck Maintenance
Along with routine deck maintenance throughout the year, there is also the need to do some great maintenance every six months to a year. One aspect of this maintenance that far too many homeowners never get around to is checking the nails, nuts and bolts that hold the deck was framing together. Not only should the nails holding the flooring in place be verified. Go on the deck to make sure there are no loose nails in the bottom frame, and that all bolts are tight. Replace any nails that are loose, and tighten any bolts that have begun to work their way out of the framing.
Sealing and Staining the deck once a year is also an essential element in deck maintenance. In some cases, you may find it necessary to sand the deck before applying a new stain to the flooring. Make sure the sander creates a smooth look to the flooring, and that all traces of the old stain and sealant are removed. If not, the deck could have a mottled appearance once you are finished with the annual staining and sealing.
Many homeowners prefer to allow the deck to breathe a bit in between applying the new stain and resealing the wood surface. In general, an hour or two is plenty of time. However, many stains today do not require any settling period, which means you can move ahead with applying the sealant almost immediately after the new stain is in place. Make sure to read the product instructions before using the sealant, and follow the application instructions exactly as they are written.
When any section of the deck deteriorates, replace it quickly. This helps minimize any chance of weakening the overall structure and shortening the life of the construction. Make sure to keep a little extra stain and sealant on hand, so you can treat the new wood as soon as it is installed, and have it blend in with the rest of the deck.
Not all decks are composed entirely of wood. If you have a deck that includes metal or concrete construction, you may need to use some additional strategies to keep your deck in top condition. A sealant that slows the development of rust not only keeps the metal components looking great, but also helps prevent corrosion that could ultimately undermine the entire structure. Special cleaners for concrete may be necessary, especially if the concrete is not sealed.
Keeping up with your deck maintenance can save you time and money. Your deck should last much longer when cared for properly, and it can look great year round. Just remember to check it periodically and you should be able to tell what needs to be done. If you struggle to find the time to maintain your deck properly, please call us at Affordable and Professional to schedule your appointment today.